Beyond Love Games-Accessing the Power of Christ

Love games, christ, christian, clueless, powerBEYOND LOVE GAMES: accessing the Power of Christ

To move Beyond Our Love Games we need to access the power of Christ. This is both simple and not so simple. If you are not a Christian, bear with me.

Love Games arise from fear: fear of being known, fear of being wounded, of being betrayed…, again. Genuinely trusting another person, especially with the person behind the wall that you have built, can be a frightening thing. Because personal revelation and exposure can be used against you.

This is just as true for Christians as anyone else. So, we hide too. We have just as many phobias and insecurities as anyone else; we live in the same world of hate, anger, risk, duplicity and sorrow as everyone else. Accessing the power of the God who lives inside us is an unfathomable resource when life’s little Love Games come knocking. So stop what you are doing, breathe, take another sip of coffee (or tea), and muse over these ideas.

  • Read vast amounts of Scripture. Like, Genesis, or I & II Samuel, maybe a Proverb-a-day (there are 31); or, all four gospels—over and over. This should get you thinking outside your worry-box. At the very least you’ll become quite familiar with large chunks of Scripture.
  • Try praying where you do not ask for anything. Just listen. Shut up and simply listen for God. [Note- He does not always speak at your bidding. Keep listening.]
  • Start living your life as if you are a forgiven sinner; for so you are. Stop confessing your sins over and over; you are wallowing in them. Dig your way out of the sludge (notice that Hand reaching out to you) and leave the muck & mire behind. No need to dredge them up so you can feel bad about yourself. As Elsa sings in Frozen— “Let it go!” Christ has. You will still sin: and you are forgiven.
  • Put God to the test. God will stand by His Word and stay with you through the Love Games. If you find yourself exhibiting forgiveness, strength-in-pain, a calm resilience, and a heart-felt peace, then you can be sure He is behind it. If not, you are working too hard at doing your Father’s job in your life. Stop it. Stop it. Stop it.
  • Try worshipping the Lord with more than your mere mind. Arouse your passions to join with your mind in worship. Our faith is just as much a heart encounter as it is a cerebral engagement. Don’t be fooled that a one-sided faith is a balanced faith. It isn’t. Besides, you need a little imbalance in your faith—it keeps you on your toes.
  • Worship together with other Christians. Here’s a good place to practice—

Hillsong: When I Lost my Heart to You

  • Cease striving. Stop fighting God. He is not sitting up there trying His best to ruin your life. He wants to fulfill it. Give Him room to work His miracles in His way…, not your way.

Keep in mind that accessing the Power of Christ is not a once-in-a-lifetime thing. Its warranty runs out when you stop using it.

Now get on your knees and seek the Father.

NEXT DISCUSSION:  How Love Games Destroy Relationships.

 Empowered,
  Gary

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winning

Gary, Davis, Gandhi, Winning,

First they ignore you,

then they laugh at you,

then they fight you,

then you win.

~ Mahatma Gandhi

1869 – 1948

I’ve never won much in life. Well, that is, if you consider, kewpie-dolls at the county fair, the first prize in a match-box car race, or a Monopoly game, or certain sports events worth winning; I just don’t seem to be cut out for winning: not, at least, at this level. I’d rather put my time and energy into winning the battle for the souls of men & women, for justice, for clearer communication between peoples who don’t even want to talk with each other, let alone consider loving each other. I’d like to bring peace where there is very little of it: that’s worth winning.

Winning is different for everybody. For some of us, every human exchange is a competitive event:  someone has to win, someone has to lose. These people play their game with every ounce of their strength and will power (in sports, business, simple conversations, or relationships) to win. For three years during college I was on our Debate Team; I never lost even one debate. As I grew in life, after college, a couple graduate programs, & a doctorate, I had to learn how NOT to win. Why? Because I lost too many relationships always trying to win, to be right, to wind up Number ONE. It wasn’t worth it to me.

When our children were in their formative years I used to tell them— If you put yourself on Top, there’s only one direction you can go. If you put yourself on the Bottom, there’s only one direction you can go. ‘Nough said.

So, my question to you is this— What’s worth winning? Is it scoring that winning point in a game? Being summa cum laude at graduation? Becoming Senior Vice-President by age thirty? Or simply driving the coolest car? To be sure there are some things in life worth winning; and, there are some things in life not really worth fighting for. We all need to pick our battles carefully. C a r e f u l l y.

For me, I just want to make a difference in this world before I check out. How about you?

For what it’s worth,

  Gary

I Have the POWER!

Dr, Gary, Davis, Clueless, Christianity, Christian, He-man, He, Man, Power“I have the POWER!”—  When our son Joshua was very young he enjoyed watching a TV cartoon called HE-Man™, a hulky warrior type who fought to rid the universe of evil. He did so by cooperating with the ultimate source of power in the universe, taking it into himself through his really cool warrior’s sword. To gain access to this power, He-Man would stand on some high pinnacle and cry aloud “I have the power!” and a bolt of lightning would surge out of the air into his body through his up-stretched sword. Then he would go off to banish the world of its invaders. Our son Josh would mimic He-Man’s behavior by lifting his modern wooden-plank sword into the air while shouting “I have the power.”

Not incongruously, the Bible also compares the Word of God to a sword—  a two edged sword capable of dividing soul and spirit.

For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.[i]

But is it the Word of God, the Bible, or is it the Word of God, Jesus Christ to which this passage refers? Is it even important we know? The point is that the Word of God, propositional or personal, has power to clarify reality; it/He has the right to weigh our thoughts, our actions, and to exact judgment upon us.

But what if an individual doesn’t accept the Bible as the Word of God? What if the Bible’s assumptions about reality are not his/hers? Can the words of the Bible have impact on that person? That’s where the other side of Truth comes in— its personal side. It is the Person of Jesus Christ who brings life to an individual, not the Bible; it is the Person of Jesus Christ who empowers a person to turn to Him for life, not the Bible. Yet one influence cannot have sufficient affect without the other— Christ, the Word of God, empowers: the Bible, the Word of God, clarifies what has just taken place. If anything, the Christian life is about being empowered by God to live a life that is in keeping with the principles for life God has set down for us— the Bible.

So which came first, the chicken or the egg? No matter— have eggs for breakfast, chicken for dinner. You need both. (Personally, I like a little salsa with my eggs. Life needs a little spicing up.) And the Christian life, if not empowered by God, is reduced to mere words. Faith without spice. Religion without life. Life without spice— no way.

So on one hand we have the Bible, the propositional explanations of what God is doing everywhere. [Note— Written in stories, songs (Psalms), historical documents (Pentateuch, Prophets, Gospels), poetry, personal correspondence (Epistles), & summaries.]  On the other hand we have Jesus Christ, the embodiment of the Godhead here on earth; the Word becoming flesh, taking on human form. The two together can empower people to embrace intelligent, meaningful lives, contributing to the needs of the saints and healing the heartaches and pain of the world. We dare not merely distribute Bibles as if they will magically empower people to live God-honoring lives: we cannot subjectively will someone to experience the presence of Christ without some explanation as to what is going on inside them. We need both. But whereas faith without works is dead (doesn’t work) neither do explanations of Truth empower a person without the power and presence of the Person of Christ in their life. In the end, Truth is primarily embodied in the Person of Jesus Christ. But without the Bible shedding light on this reality the Truth cannot be known.

But there is yet one more ingredient to consider in our mix of Truth with life—  Passion!  Read on.

Clueless, Christianity, Christian, Book, Dr, Gary, Davis

[i] Hebrews 4:12, NIV Bible

 

My Preference – my Presc-ciousss!

Dr, Gary, Davis, Clueless, Christianity, NEEDinc, preferences, selfish, selfishness, precious, How much do personal preferences cause perennial problems between people?!? OK, the alliteration is iffy; but the issue it illuminates is a serious one. At times it seems that too many of us place our personal proclivities and preferences above the good of-the-many. It’s what I want that matters; not what you want. My desires come first.

Really?!?

Some of us just cannot seem to get along with anyone. Why? Because we refuse to cut any slack to anyone to who does not meet our standards of excellence; who will not see things any other way but their own; who refuse to admit that their personal preference is is only one way. They will not admit they could be wrong or that someone else might be right.

Really!?!

How dare we make our personal preferences the standard by which we judge everything else?!? So if you disagree with me, forgetaboutit. I need have nothing more to do with you.

Really?!?

NO ONE individual has all the strengths needed to master a craft, to complete a complex task, or to bring a dream or plan to fruition. We ALL need one another to make society, or family, or church, or business, work.

So can we lay aside our preferences and begin to build something together?!? Too many of us hoard our abilities and preferences like J.R.R Tolkien’s Gollum with his Presc-ciousss; his Ring-of-Power, which, in the end was the power that possessed him and destroyed him.

Far too often, our preferences take over our very core-values and destroy us. We believe that our way is the only right way, and we break friendships and commitments with those who feel otherwise. Some things, to be sure, are worth fighting for; but hanging onto our particular preferences is not one of them. True strength, true power, is the natural byproduct of people with different strengths, and preferences, coming together to build something greater.

Are up for that? Or would you rather hang on for dear life to your personal preferences…, your presc-ciousss?

 

Jus’ sayin’,

  Gary